GSTC – Global Sustainable Tourism Council

The GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council) is a non-governmental organization established in 2007 with the support of UNEP – United Nations Environment Programme – and UNWTO – United Nations World Tourism Organization – to promote sustainability and social responsibility in the tourism sector.

GSTC – Global Sustainable Tourism Council
    GSTC certificate

    About the certification

    GSTC is the global standard or norm for sustainable tourism and is comparable to other frameworks like MSC or FSC. In addition, GSTC Certification is a third party audit of a tourism business or destination to the GSTC standard.

    Control Union is a GSTC accredited Certification Body. GSTC Accreditation plays an important role to assure impartiality, quality, competence and credibility of the process and the certification itself.

    GSTC Certification can help tourism businesses to redefine the way they do business, for the benefit of both people and planet. This sustainability journey presents invaluable opportunities for tourism businesses and destinations for improvements, reflections, endowing credibility and connecting with host communities.

    Sustainable Tourism

    The travel and tourism sector is recovering strongly after the pandemic. It is expected that it will not take long before previous records will be reached again. At the same time, there is also a strong call in the sector to embed sustainable tourism and to ‘build back better’. Tourism needs to be managed responsibly to create a positive cycle of impacts on local communities, culture, environment and economies. This requires responsibility and actions from both tourism businesses and other stakeholders. At the same time, it provides plenty of challenges and opportunities in the sector.

    GSTC sustainable tourism

    Our offer

    • Control Union Certifications (CUC) offers a global one-stop-shop for GSTC certification and a wide range of certification programmes

    • CUC is an Accredited Certification Body for the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) Industry standards. This means we have been awarded certification according to processes that comply with the highest international standards and good practices

    • CUC can offer GSTC certification for both individual tourism enterprises as well as for groups of e.g. hotels or tour operators (group certification)

    GSTC Accredited Certification programs:


    • GSTC for hotels download criteria

      Download criteria
    • GSTC for tour operators download criteria

      Download criteria
    • GSTC for attractions & excursions (in the course of 2023)

    • Türkiye’s Sustainable Tourism Certification Program

    GSTC – Tourism Program leaflet

    GSTC – Tourism Program leaflet
    GSTC Tourism Program Leaflet

    How you benefit

    By obtaining GSTC certification, you enjoy the following benefits:

    • Compliance with the highest social and environmental standards in the world & credible communication on your sustainability performance supported by use of the certified logo

    • Audited and certified by an accredited certification body with the highest level of impartiality and credibility & better connections with consumers who now expect independently verified green credentials

    • Happy guests = higher ratings. Certified businesses receive better reviews and ratings. This proves that certification boosts management and quality of services. Enhanced brand reputation as you are connected to a commitment to local communities and the environment

    • Better business and better risk management through regular review of operations and processes e.g. certified businesses manage their waste, water and energy much better and use less! Apart from significant cost savings, it is much better for the environment, host communities and your business

    • Local and global recognition towards businesses, governments, customers and host communities & preferred choice for bed banks, OTA’s , (business) travel companies etc. that highlight credible, sustainable travel options

    Seth Wang Zhi Yu

    How can I help you?

    Are you looking for a certain service, do you have any questions or do you want to apply for the certification program? Let me know. My name is Seth Wang and I’m glad to be of help.